It’s the last Shabbat of 2011, so better make it special!
Looking to start your Shabbat with a festive drink? This Cork County Bubbles Cocktail recipe is sure to satisfy the wine lovers, and the scotch lovers, since it uses champagne (or sparkling wine) along with whiskey!
It seems every family has their own recipe for deviled eggs, but here is a great take I’ve never seen before – Chickpea Deviled Eggs! Or if you’re serving a dairy meal, try this unique version from Smitten Kitchen for Caesar Salad Deviled Eggs.
I think you are going to love this recipe for Apple Cider Glazed Pot Roast that I got from a friend. Not only is this recipe delicious, but its also super easy since its made in a crock pot – perfect for this time of year when Shabbat starts so early.
Lately, I cannot get enough cauliflower! My grandmother even bought me a cauliflower, and wrapped it, as a gift for Hanukkah. So besides roasting, what else to do? How about this Crispy Cauliflower with Olives, Capers and Parsley.
My dad actually made this Pumpkin Cranberry Bread recently, and it was surprisingly delicious. Usually when my dad tries to bake, it tastes like it’s been sitting in my grandmother’s freezer for 6 months. So bottom line – its a fool-proof recipe and perfect for this time of year. If you want to make this pareve, you can replace the butter with margarine. I would also recommend using fresh cranberries.
Happy cooking, Shabbat Shalom and Happy (secular) New Year!
I have a confession to make. I’m not proud of it but I feel compelled to share. You know how most Jewish gatherings serve the ubiquitous Assorted Cookie Platter? You know the ones I mean… Well, I confess: I hoard the multi-colored Rainbow Cookies.
I don’t intend to hoard them – in fact, I always start with just one. But I inevitably end up going back for seconds and thirds. I know… they’re called assorted cookies because you’re supposed to try several types. I just can’t help myself! I love their moist and rich almond interior, lightened by a hint of acidic apricot and then intensified by a touch of bitter chocolate. Add the fun colors and you have the perfect cookie.
When planning this year’s Hanukkah gathering, I decided the festivities wouldn’t be complete without these cookies. With just a tiny adjustment to my regular recipe, they became Rainbow Cookies á la Hanukkah. Making them is a multi-step process but, fear not, they are easy steps. Here’s the recipe:
About Joy Prevor: A food aficionado and graduate of Le Cordon Bleu, Joy Dawn Prevor has served as a major gifts fundraiser and senior executive in the Jewish nonprofit sector for over 17 years.
2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
8 oz almond paste
1 teaspoon almond extract
4 large eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 drops blue food coloring
12 drops blue food coloring
12 oz apricot preserves, heated and strained
12 oz high-quality semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, melted
Preheat oven to 350F. Butter three 9 X 13 baking sheet pans and line with parchment paper. Beat almond paste in stand mixer until smooth. Add butter and sugar and beat until fluffy. Add almond extract and then eggs, one at a time. Add flour and salt - only beat until combined.
Divide batter into three bowls and add 6 drops of blue food coloring to one bowl and 12 drops of blue food coloring to a second bowl – leave the third bowl plain.
Spread each batter into its own pan and bake for approximately 10 minutes and cool on a wire rack. Once cooled, place one of the blue cakes on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Spread preserves on it and place the plain cake on top. Spread preserves on plain cake and place the other blue cake on top. Freeze for 1 hour to set jam.
Spread melted chocolate on top and on sides – chill for 30 minutes to set. Flip cake onto another piece of parchment paper and spread chocolate on the other side – freeze for at least one hour. While still frozen, slice cake into 1 ½ inch logs and slice logs into individual ½ inch cookies. Allow cookies to defrost before serving
This week on our book blog Members of the Scribe, we’re hosting guest-blogger Stanley Ginsburg, author of Inside the Jewish Bakery. In his first post today, he’s asking a question that’s astounded and confounded us for years — what exactly does calling something a “Jewish bakery” mean?
I have to confess, I was stunned: no one had ever asked me that question, nor, indeed, had I ever asked it of myself. In my world, everyoneknows what a Jewish bakery is – a bakery that sells Jewish baked goods.
But here’s where it gets complicated. What exactly are “Jewish baked goods?” The ones that come first to mind – bagels, rugelach, onion rolls, challah – appear to be no-brainers, but in fact all can be traced back through their
Yiddish forebears to the gentile Central and Eastern European societies in which the Jews found themselves living at various times.
And while you’ve got Jewish bakeries on the brain (stomach), here are a few of our favorite recipes:
Happy Hanukkah! Happy eating!
Another (secular) year is almost up, and it’s been a pretty good year for Jewish and kosher cuisine. We’ve had a kosher pastry chef appear on a national TV Food competition, kosher food trucks gain followings across the country, and a gastronomic renaissance for traditional, Eastern European Jewish fare.
Read on to see some of the best Jewish and Kosher food trends of 2011, and make sure to send us any we missed.
Upscale Deli and Haute Jewish Cuisine
It was truly the year for re-invented Jewish deli, and traditional Jewish-American fare. Montreal-style deli and bagels made their way to Brooklyn with the opening of the Mile End Delicatessen. A “speciality bagelry” also appeared as Vic’s Bagel Bar and new restaurants such as Kutschers Tribeca all brought back the Jew food in a major way.
My own take: as Americans focus on artisanal meats and charcuterie, as well as experience a general foodie re-focus towards comfort food, its no wonder that deli sandwiches, bagels and matzah balls are being given a makeover (and popularity boost). And I can’t wait to see what’s next!
Kosher Restaurant Trends: Asian Fusion
I don’t eat solely in kosher restaurants, so I turned to kosher dining expert and blogger Dani Klein to get the latest trends in kosher dining. Dani, who is the founder of YeahThatsKosher, shares that restaurants are going Asian in the U.S. from LA to Miami to New York:
“Numerous restaurants have been opening and focusing solely on the various flavors from the East, which include a full sushi menu (a staple in nearly all kosher restaurants today), as well as other Japanese cuisine, Thai, Vietnamese, Indian, Malaysian, and others. Relatively new kosher Asian Fusion restaurants including Prime KO & Sushein in NYC; Estihana in Teaneck, NJ; Lotus in Surfside (Miami), FL; Saba Sushi in Los Angeles, as well as scores in Brooklyn and Israel, have opened up in the past year, or so. They’re riding the wave of sushi’s popularity and meshing it with other cuisine and meat dishes from the region.
Dessert: Bye-bye Cupcakes, Welcome Cake Pops and Macarons
Move over cupcakes, there’s a new dessert in town: cake pops and whoopie pies says DC blogger, foodie and photographer Emily P. Goodstein, of Wild and Crazy Pearl. Want to try out the latest trend? Blogger Overtime Cook has some great tips.
Other dessert trends? Chef Paula Shoyer, kosher dessert expert, cookbook author and Sweet Genius contestant shares that french macarons are becoming more popular even with kosher bakeries and caterers (good news for anyone hosting an affair in the near future).
Chef Paula also shared that special diet baking, particularly gluten free options, “is getting more attention as kosher companies see the large market for gluten free desserts….the more creative kosher restaurant chefs are trying to bake with more natural ingredients and stay away from the more processed products.” Well, who doesn’t love that – natural is back!
She also shared her kosher dessert predictions for the coming year:
“Coming up: Aerated chocolate bars and candies; hand pies and retro desserts in flavors such as malt and butterscotch; more whole grain desserts; whoopie pies; and more and more macarons!”
Food Trucks Go Kosher
Unless you’ve been under a rock, it would be hard not to notice the food truck craze that has taken over the nation. Personally, I have made it a mission to try as many NYC food trucks as possible, and the size of my tuchus is a testament to my successful foodie mission over the last two years.
Kosher food trucks have been seen gracing the streets of NYC and LA for at least two years, but perhaps the most exciting food truck that came onto the scene was the Sixth and Rye Truck. A popular DC food truck and project of the innovative Sixth and I Synagogue, and Top Chef contestant Chef Spike Mendelsohn, the truck is now closed for the winter, but we remain hopeful this is not the end for “DC’s First Kosher Deli on Wheels.”
Jewish goes treyf
The trend of Jewish-treyf fusion is perhaps my favorite trend of the year, and indeed, the most controversial. In Williamsburg, Brooklyn there is literally a restaurant called Treif, featuring a pork and seafood focused menu.
Then there is Top Chef Ilan Hall’s creation of a bacon wrapped matzo ball. And I have also heard reports here in NYC of bagel shops featuring bacon cream cheese.
I know, I know – some of you are deeply offended by the fusion of traditional Jewish food, and blatantly non-kosher products. But I always find it interesting when cultures merge, collide and spark creativity. Is a matzo ball wrapped in bacon still a Jewish food? And what is a Jewish food anyways?
Well, I can’t wait to see what’s in store for 2012 – what do you think is on the culinary horizon for Jewish and kosher food?
Christmas is here, and Chinese restaurants are preparing for the Jews to take over. This week I’ve put together some Asian inspired dishes to grace your Shabbat table, and relieve the Chinese takeout industry.
To start, why not try this Jewish Turkey-Wonton Soup, which actually uses traditional kreplach as the wontons! It looks amazing.
My husband and I love this recipe for Sticky Sesame Chicken Wings and we make them all the time! Even my brother who is a bit of a picky eater likes the recipe. This would go great with some perfectly cooked white or brown rice, and perhaps a slaw such as this Asian Slaw with Ginger-Dressing.
For dessert? Keep it simple and put out some sliced pineapple or orange wedges. Ah, brings back fond Chinese restaurant memories.
Shabbat Shalom, Happy Cooking, and Happy Holidays!
Last week at work (well my other work), I had my first sufganiya, or traditional Hanukkah jelly doughnut, of the season. Each Hanukkah I usually focus my culinary attention on the latke. But this year I’ve been thinking on what kinds of unique sufganiyot flavors are out there, and what kinds of possibilities lie on the horizon.
For example, instead of just the jelly, what about a PB&J flavor? Or peaches n cream, with peach compote and whipped cream in the middle…
Instead of just musing on the possibilities, I put together a few unique recipes for a less “traditional” jelly doughnut experience:
The Kosher Gastronome has a recipe for Sufganiyot with Dulce de Leche Filling. If it was up to me, I would add some thick sea salt to that dulce de leche to make for a sweet n salty sufganiyot tasting. And as it so happens, I came across this recipe for Apple Cider Sufganiyot with Salted Caramel.
Israeli chain Roladin has been creating flavors such as halva filled sufganiyot and white ganache filled sufganiyot.
And how about these Chai Sufganiyot with Orange Pumpkin Buttercream.
All this sounds too complicated, or schmancy? Epicurious has a step-by-step Doughnut Demo to go over the frying basics in order to create a perfect, basic Hanukkah doughnut.
Please send us links or pics of the most unique sufganiyot you’ve made, or seen!
Let me be clear about one thing before I go any further. I almost feel like this is confessional: I have never fried anything, and so I had absolutely no idea what to expect. This is coming from a girl who, though she loves herself a good dessert, was never, ever allowed to eat anything fried. In fact, the only way we were ever able to convince my mom to let us eat a doughnut was to tell her that it was a cinnamon bun (nevermind that it was deep fried and glazed!). Talk about pulling a fast one on her. Scarfing down those “cinnamon buns” was a blast. It felt so good. So rebellious. So child-like.
Enter the sufganiya. Many of my ice cream recipes pay homage to my childhood, but this one, ah this golden, cinnamon sugar coated bundle of goodness, reminds me so much of Hanukkah that I get giddy like a little school girl just thinking about it. Maybe if I tap my heels together three times some presents will show up at my door! Wishful thinking.
Back to these sufganiyot. The Hebrew word for sufganiya derived from the word for sponge (sfog), is supposed to describe the texture of a sufganiya which is somewhat similar to a sponge. I like to tell myself that because the texture is like a sponge (which I think is airy, not fried and fatty!) a sufganiya is completely healthy. And when injected with raspberry preserves, even healthier!
This time of year, when all I do is eat sweets, I try to refrain from thinking about how unhealthy it is and instead think about the significance of these doughnuts. On Hanukkah we eat these golden delicious sufganiyot because they are fried in oil, which helps to remind us of one of the miracles of Hanukkah.
So, to toast that small miracle, let’s chow down on some delicious Sufganiyot Ice Cream. Enjoy!
For the Sufganiyot
2 Tablespoons active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water (100 degrees to 110 degrees)
1/4 cup plus 1 teaspoon sugar, plus more for rolling
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
2 large eggs
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
2 teaspoons salt
3 cups vegetable oil, plus more for bowl
1 cup seedless raspberry jam
Additional cinnamon and sugar for dusting
For the Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
1 cup whole milk
2 cups half-and-half
3/4 cup sugar
3 egg yolks
1 Tablespoon vanilla bean paste
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Raspberry Sauce
12oz bag of frozen raspberries
1 Tablespoon raspberry vodka
3 Tablespoons sugar
For this recipe, patience is a must! This is a multi-step process but trust me, it's worth it. (Note: this recipe can be made over 2 days if you don't have an entire Sunday afternoon as I did!)
First, make the vanilla ice cream base. In a small saucepan heat together the milk, 1 cup half-and-half, sugar and the vanilla bean paste until small bubbles form around the edges.
While the mixture is warming, whisk together three egg yolks. Pour the milk mixture into the egg yolks very slowly, stirring between each pour. Scrape the bottom of the bowl to make sure you get all the vanilla bean paste, and pour back into the saucepan. Heat until the mixture reaches 170 degrees F. If you don't have a thermometer heat until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spatula or a wooden spoon. Once ready, pour over a fine mesh strainer into a clean bowl (it's important to strain this ice cream because inevitably small little curdles will form from heating the egg and milk, and trust me, you don't want those in your ice cream!). Once strained, slowly stir in the remaining cup of half-and-half and the vanilla extract.
Let the mixture cool completely before refrigerating for at least 2 hours or overnight.
Next, it's time to make the sufganiyot! This, my friends, is a labor of love. In a small bowl, combine yeast, warm water, and 1 teaspoon sugar. Set aside until foamy, about 10 minutes.
Place flour in a large bowl. Make a well in the center; add eggs, yeast mixture, 1/4 cup sugar, butter, and salt. Using a wooden spoon, stir until a sticky dough forms. On a well-floured work surface, knead until dough is smooth, soft, and bounces back when poked with a finger, about 8 minutes (add more flour if necessary). Place in an oiled bowl; cover with plastic wrap. Set in a warm place to rise until doubled, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
While the ice cream mixture is cooling, and the sufganiyot are rising, make the raspberry sauce. Pour the bag of frozen raspberries into a small saucepan, and mix until heated. The raspberries will turn to mush (which is what you want). Stir in the sugar and vodka and let the mixture heat for 2-4 minutes. Remove from the heat, and strain through a fine mesh strainer. Discard the seeds, and keep the smooth raspberry sauce. Set aside.
Next, it's time to form and fry the donuts. On a lightly floured work surface, roll dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Using a 2 1/2-inch-round cutter or drinking glass , cut 20 rounds. Cover with plastic wrap; let rise 15 minutes.
In medium saucepan over medium heat, heat oil until a deep-frying thermometer registers 370 degrees. Using a slotted spoon, carefully slip 4 rounds into oil. Fry until golden, about 10-20 seconds on each side. Turn doughnuts over; fry until golden on other side, another 10-20 seconds. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet. Roll in cinnamon sugar while warm. Fry all dough, and roll in the cinnamon sugar mixture.
This part of the process takes a little getting used to. Inevitably your first few doughnuts will burn. Don't stress, you will have plenty more. I noticed that by the time I put 3-4 doughnuts into the hot oil, it was time to flip them, and once they were flipped, it was time to remove them! Hard to keep up with it! If the doughnuts look burnt, chances are, they're totally fine, just slightly darker than you may have wanted. Don't worry, they still taste delicious! Also, it's very important to douse the doughnuts in the cinnamon sugar immediately after frying, otherwise it won't stick.
Once you're done frying all the doughnuts you'll want to fill them with jam. Since I didn't have a pastry bag or a #4 tip I used a ziploc bag with a tiny whole cut out. I wouldn't recommend this, so if you can, head over to Michael's Craft Shop or a baking store and buy a pastry bag and a #4 tip. It's much easier!
Fill a pastry bag fitted with a #4 tip with jam. Using a wooden skewer or toothpick, make a hole in the side of each doughnut. Fit the pastry tip into a hole, pipe about 2 teaspoons jam into doughnut. Repeat with remaining doughnuts.
Now it's time for the great assembly! Pour the ice cream mixture into the base of your ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer's instructions. While churning, chop up 6 doughnuts into small pieces. Approximately 5 minutes before the mixture is done churning add the sufganiyot pieces and let it mix thoroughly.
Drizzle a few tablespoons of raspberry sauce on the bottom of a freezer safe container. Add a few scoops of ice cream. Cover with more raspberry sauce and repeat process until you've layered the ice cream and raspberry sauce. Drizzle a bit more raspberry sauce on top and cover. Transfer to the freezer for at least 2 hours before serving. You will have leftover raspberry sauce, which I advise saving for garnish!
When you're ready to eat, scoop 1-2 heaps of ice cream into a bowl (you'll notice there is a beautiful raspberry marble!) and drizzle with raspberry sauce on top. Enjoy!
The Verdict: Taim me'od! (very tasty!) This is a perfect treat for the holiday season. In fact, so tasty that I recommend sharing it with friends (like I did) or else you may gobble the whole thing up! Enjoy this fun take on an old classic and Happy Hanukkah!
Holidays in general are not very easy on the dieting sector, but when you think about it, nothing beats Hanukkah. Basically we have eight days in a row where its traditional to eat fried foods. And so we start the meal with fried carbs, cap it off with deep fried dough, and probably spend weeks dreading the scale.
Tradition is great, and I am all for it, but there is also a mitzvah to take care of yourself, and I think that eating healthy is way up there on the list of ways to take care of yourself. And while I am not suggesting we all boycott every form of fried food this Hanukkah, a great way to stay healthy and eat healthy is to follow one of my most important dieting tricks: combat delicious and tempting food with delicious, but healthy food.
The challenge, for me, as a perpetual dieter as well as a cook, is to come up with a recipe that is within the spirit of Hanukkah, but won’t cause a bad case of “scale fear.” I think, if I do say so myself, that I succeeded amazingly with these spinach latkes. It’s pretty sad the way spinach gets such a bad rap among vegetables. I think it’s delicious, and I let it shine in this recipe.
This recipe comes together in a frying pan, but don’t let that fool you. This latke recipe is super healthy…and yet totally delicious. Make sure to have enough on hand for the non-dieters. They might just love them as much as I do!
Miriam Pascal blogs at Tales of an Overtime Cook.
spray oil, for frying
1 large onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 lb bag frozen spinach, thawed
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons lemon juice
3/4 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt, to taste
additional black pepper, to taste
Prepare sauteed spinach: sautee onions in spray oil on low to medium flame until translucent. Add minced garlic and sautee an additional couple of minutes. Add thawed spinach and stir to combine. Continue to cook over low to medium flame, stirring occasionally. Cook 20-30 minutes, until spinach is heated through and fully cooked. Add salt, pepper and lemon juice.
You can make the sauteed spinach in advance, and when you are ready to make the latkes, proceed with the following instructions:
In a large mixing bowl, combine sauteed spinach, eggs, breadcrumbs, oil and salt. Heat a frying pan and spray well with spray oil. Roll some of the batter in your hands to form a ball, then press between your palms to form a (relatively thin) patty. Fry on medium flame for 2-3 minutes per side, or until light brown. I like to taste the first latke to make sure I got the spices right, then fry the rest.
Notes: When spinach fries it turns brown and may look burnt, but it isn't!
Don't flip the latkes too soon, or they will fall apart. Make sure you allow them enough time to get cooked on the bottom before flipping.
I love food shopping, probably even more than I enjoy clothes shopping. There’s something both exciting and relaxing about meticulously planning a menu, and then leisurely strolling down aisles to pick out each item.
I am pretty good about writing out a list before I head to shop, but I don’t coupon-cut like my mother did, nor do I spend too much time analyzing my supermarket habits or strategies.
But, after I watched a CNBC special insider look into supermarkets, “Supermarkets Inc: Inside a $500 Billion Dollar Industry,” that might change. The investigative piece explored, as you might guess, the supermarket industry in America, what motivates Americans’ food shopping habits and the strategies of supermarkets.
For example: why is milk all the way in the back? Because most people are going into the supermarket to buy milk, so if its at the back, they have to walk through the entire store, passing by more products that might tempt them to buy. (Stew Leonard’s unique shopping experience is based entirely on this premise.)
So what are the implications for Kosher food? Pomegranate market in Brooklyn, NY has already picked up on current food trends: providing prepared foods, quality fish and speciliaty items that are typically difficult to find with a hechsher at your average kosher market.
Will other “Kosher Whole Foods” markets start cropping up across the country? Are there others already around that I don’t know about? Let me know, and go watch the CNBC special – your food shopping may never be the same again.
Another week, another round of recipe ideas for your Shabbat table.
Last month I had the most delicious Caesar Brussel Sprout Salad at Almond in Bridgehampton, New York. Ever since I’ve been looking for a similar recipe, but in the meantime, I came across this Food Network Brussel Sprout Salad with a light dressing, and dried fruit. If you’re making this with a meat meal, just leave out the manchego cheese.
This Citrus and Rosemary Roast Chicken recipe is pretty similar to my own go-to chicken recipe for Shabbat dinner. My favorite tip? Marinate the chicken on Thursday night in a plastic bag, and let sit overnight in the fridge. By the time you roast your Shabbat chicken, it will be infused with flavor, and super moist.
I love roasted potatoes, but sometimes you want something a little more special. This “Potatoes a la Bakery” has a wow factor, yet is super simple to prepare. Just replace the butter in the recipe with olive oil, or my favorite, duck fat (chicken fat would work great too).
My mother-in-law made this recipe for Roasted Fennel with Olives and Garlic recently and it was delicious!